Miami

Surprising Vegetarian and Vegan Miami Spice 2017 Options

Update 9/20/2017 – in the wake of Hurricane Irma, many Miami restaurant are extending their Miami Spice menus until the end of October.

Miami Spice, the Magic City’s annual two-month prix-fixe menu heaven, is the perfect excuse to get out of the heat and into a cool, air-conditioned restaurant. But for those who prefer a plant-based diet, Miami Spice doesn’t traditionally have much to offer. I did some sleuthing and, surprisingly, found some great vegetarian and vegan Miami Spice options.

What is Miami Spice?

The three-course Miami Spice menus cost $23 for lunch and $39 for dinner at most restaurants. Some tack on a surcharge for specialty entrees or wine pairings, while some include a beverage or amuse bouche. So, for someone trying to be frugal, Miami Spice gets you an excellent value for a high-quality meal.

These restaurants aren’t even close to being 100% veg-friendly, so I wouldn’t have assumed they had meatless options on their Miami Spice menus. These restaurants offer well-rounded menu choices perfect for any dietary preference. I hope you can enjoy some great meals with friends, family, or clients who are or are not vegan/vegetarian.

Downtown Miami Skyline
Look no further for the best plant-based Miami Spice meals.

Vegetarian and Vegan Miami Spice Menus – Downtown/Brickell

Seaspice 

In addition to the lovely river view, Seaspice has some solid plant-based options for lunch, dinner, and (bonus!) brunch. Seaspice’s lunch and dinner menus offer a fresh watercress salad with a cucumber vinaigrette and a vegan Summer Plant Bowl which includes cannelloni beans, roasted corn, radicchio, and sun-dried tomatoes. Pair your weekend mimosa with Seaspice’s Yellow Tomato Gazpacho and a Power Waffle topped with banana and hazelnut butter.

Brunch: Saturday and Sunday; Lunch: Weekdays; Dinner: Weeknights

Zuma 

This Japanese hotspot is out of my price range 10 months out of the year… but their Miami Spice menus are nearly impossible to pass up! Luckily for plant-based foodies, Zuma offers an awesome lineup of veggie options this year. Mix up your workday with their White Miso Soup and Grilled Vegetable Donburi lunch. Then, at night, dinner can begin with a Roasted Beetroot Salad, followed by Truffle Rice Donburi with vegetables (quail egg optional).

Lunch: Monday to Friday; Dinner: Sunday to Wednesday

Fooq’s 

Have you ever tried Persian food? A rare find in Miami, Fooq’s offers a delicious-sounding dinner menu including a Honey Glazed Brussels Sprout starter and not one, but two plant-based entrees. Choose from the Crispy Rice and Seasonal Vegetables, served with walnuts and pomegranate molasses, or their Summer Khoresh (traditional Persian vegetable stew), served with basmati rice.

Dinner: Tuesday to Sunday

Big Easy Winebar & Grill 

A new addition to Miami’s growing options for global cuisine, Big Easy takes inspiration from South African vineyards. On the third floor of sparkling Brickell City Centre, you can even wander around a bit before or after your meal. Big Easy’s regular menu is pretty meat-heavy, but they do offer some vegan Miami Spice selections – try either the Bloody Mary Gazpacho or Cauliflower Samosas to start, before digging into their Toasted Couscous Risotto (with Parmesan thyme cream, not vegan).

Lunch: Monday to Friday; Dinner: Sunday to Thursday

Miami Beach

Essensia

Give yourself a little staycation at the Palms Hotel & Spa, where you can treat yourself to a Miami Spa Month service (through the end of August) before a delicious vegan Miami Spice meal at Essensia. Offering brunch, lunch, and dinner daily, Essensia focuses on fresh, local cuisine and even grows some veggies and herbs on site. On weekend mornings, enjoy their Avocado Toast, Lemon Quinoa Pancakes, and a fruit plate before relaxing on the beach. Or, on weekdays, their lunch menu begins with a couple vegan options, including Chilled Chayote Soup and Oyster Mushroom Ceviche, followed by a Black Bean and Quinoa Salad (shrimp omitted). And for dinner, start with the Watermelon Salad (feta omitted if desired) and their daily vegan/vegetarian special. Then, try one of their refreshing sorbets for dessert (I recommend the passion fruit).

Brunch: Saturday and Sunday; Lunch: Monday to Friday; Dinner: Daily

Nobu Miami Beach

Another example of a restaurant I ordinarily wouldn’t go to, Nobu offers a Miami Spice lunch menu complete with some good plant-based selections. The meal starts off with the Nobu Vegetable Trio appetizer. Next, I recommend trying the Sauteed Vegetables with Spicy Garlic sauce for your entree (Light Garlic Sauce also available). For dessert (or after dessert), I recommend exploring the hotel’s beautiful lobby and taking a peek at the ocean view.

Lunch: Daily

Estiatorio Milos

This SoFi classic is no stranger to the prix-fixe menu concept, but Miami Spice makes Milos’s spectacular Mediterranean food more affordable than ever. Furthermore, the restaurant is open for lunch and dinner daily, so there’s no reason not to try it. With plenty of veggie options, there is something for everyone on their Miami Spice menus. For lunch, begin with the Tomato Salad, and try the Grilled Vegetable Plate for your entree. Dinner offers the same entree, but includes a Greek Salad starter (feta optional). In addition, a fresh fruit plate completes the meal.

Lunch: Daily; Dinner: Daily.

Coral Gables/South Miami

Cibo Wine Bar

Wind down after a long day with a glass (or bottle) of wine at Cibo Wine Bar, the ideal pairing for their vegetarian Miami Spice menu choices. Cibo’s weekday lunch begins with Minestrone soup, with a mozzarella di bufala pizza. Complete the meal with the Nutella Pizza for dessert, topped with banana. Dinner can begin with the Arugula and Radicchio Insalate (vegan) or the Caprese Salad (featuring mozzarella di bufala). Following the starter, go for the Gigli pasta entree complete with veggies and buccatini (small mozzarella balls, could be omitted).

Lunch: Monday to Friday; Dinner: Sunday to Thursday

Sawa

This Mediterranean/Japanese Merrick Park eatery not only has a great weekday happy hour, but also some solid veggie options on their Miami Spice menus. Sawa offers a variety of plant-based appetizers on both their lunch and dinner menus, from an Avocado Summer Roll to the Goddess Salad (both vegan) at lunch and Mini Mediterranean Sampler and Quinoa Salad choices at dinner. Next, their lunch menu has a vegetarian entree, Portabello Risotto, and the dinner menu includes Vegetarian Mousakaa. If driving isn’t your thing, Merrick Park is easily accessible from the Douglas Road Metrorail stop.

Lunch: Daily; Dinner: Daily

Wynwood/Midtown/North Miami

Kyu

One of Wynwood’s most popular new restaurants, Kyu‘s Zuma-trained chef and team have put together a mouth-watering vegetarian Miami Spice lunch menu. To start off, try their Roasted Cauliflower and Goat Cheese with a Shishito-Herb Vinaigrette. Next, choose from their entree selections of Smoked and Grilled Mushrooms with Vietnamese Lettuce Wraps or the Thai Fried Rice Stone Pot. Fruit and herb sorbets wrap up the meal.

Lunch: Monday to Friday

Sugarcane raw bar grill

Although Sugarcane is famous for its robata grill and creative sushi, they’ve stepped up their veggie game with some great vegan Miami Spice options on their menus. Available for both lunch and dinner, their appetizer is Sumac Glazed Carrots with labneh (yogurt sauce – can request on the side), sprouts, and seeds. Then, enjoy that smoky grilled flavor of the robata grill in the Charred Eggplant Baba Ganoush, served with a yellow lentil dosa and pickled cherries.

Lunch: Monday to Friday; Dinner: Sunday to Thursday

What are your favorite vegan or vegetarian Miami Spice spots? Any recommendations for other under-the-radar vegan options in Miami?

 

 

 

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